There I was - lying on the table - shrouded in complete fear. I could barely feel my left arm and what I could feel was pain that was so intense, I wanted to run and hide and flee. I wanted to crawl under the table, hide in the corner, not do anything that would connect me to the pain I was feeling.
The fears were intense. The questions were strong. Could I do this? Do I really want to do this? This is too hard! All these things were attacking me as if I had come up against an army 100 million times my army of one!
Yet, I had been here before. I had been through these moments in my healing. I knew the process. I was familiar with the feelings, the thoughts, the fears and emotions. Still, my mind seemed like a blank slate. It seemed like all that I knew was not within my grasp. It seemed that reality and pain and being disconnected from my body had all played Russian Roulette, and so the outcome seemed to be impossible to predict.
The more I wanted to flee the pain and hide, the more I felt so alone and lost. My arm at first would barely move, and felt as if the muscles were going to tear apart inside. My body felt as if it was being smashed head first into a wall like a cop frisking a suspect. As the moments wore on, the stiffness invaded my entire body. My body failed to move. It was as if the cells could not turn the ignition on to start their engines. The fears were great. The fears increased. It felt like time had stopped.
Nothing felt safe in that moment. Having someone close to me did not seem to matter. I felt so alone and lost out in space. I felt so engulfed into this deep dark black space that had once again introduced itself to me. While I wanted to flee and run, the stiffness in my body, the pain that ran from my shoulder, led to feeling like I was being stabbed in the neck. It paralyzed me in fear. It seemed like I was getting the crap pounded out of me. It seemed like I had no choice. It seemed like I was destined to live with this.
Yet, I knew I was entering that dark tunnel with the immense darkness of space and time. It was a horrifying and lonely deep black space within me. It was one that I was afraid that if I traveled into, would I be able to find my way back out?
The emotions of sadness intensified, and the tears of feeling all alone and hopeless, void of possibility, swirled around me like a hurricane coming on shore. Emotions of every shape, flavor and color attacked me by a hundred fold as if there was no other moment. The moment of their advance on me, it seemed was now. Thoughts continued to arise, can I do this? Do I want to do this? Can I not go back to where I came from? Can this just be a bad nightmare that will end very soon?
Of course, I knew the answers to these and I knew the struggle. I knew the fight. There was peace beyond this that I had been shown before, but that peace seemed like an impossible dream. Being reminded that I had tools and that this was part of the process was reassuring but the fears laughed in their faces.
And one final last push of going deep into the pain, brought me front and center with the deep dark place I had traveled into. It brought me to a point where I knew I had the strength, the tools and the support to get through this moment. For to stop and turn around now, would only feed the fears and increase the black space. To go head first and take the fears and black space on, I would find something greater than I knew. That one final last push of going deep into the fear and into that which I so badly wanted to escape, gave me the peace I so longed for.
So one last final push into the deepness that engulfed me, while holding on to the fact that there was a way through this - the pain intensified, the fears increased, the sadness overwhelmed me. I stayed connected with my body and kept my eyes on the goal and all at once, my breathing came back to me, the stiffness in my muscles left me, and the pain escaped. My body transformed through all these things into moments of deep peace and insight, showing me all that I could do and had the power to do.
It wasn't magic. It wasn't about the emotions that came up. It was about me connecting to that deep place within myself. It was about connecting with the deep dark black space called implicit memory. The implicit memory has no story, but it holds all the emotions of a lifetime. Its weapon is fear and its strength is feeding from the pain it inflicts upon the body. The only defense is to take it on and say, enough is enough - you're no longer going to rule my life. I have your number! I am in control. I have the power to do this and to continue taking back my life.
I'm once again reminded of just how much power and strength we have within us. We are much more than we often believe, and give ourself credit for. Yet, when the fear looks like a giant before us, we run for cover. In the end, we will soon realize that the giant is filled with nothing more than hot air, and if you poke a needle into it, the giant of fear will deflate.
This is the essence of healing. It is the moment of reclaiming the body. It is about becoming more aware of one's self and finding the insight that we need. Within the body is held vast amounts of information and even though we may feel disconnected to it or afraid of it, looking within is the way to give ourselves life, freedom and hope.
May I remember this each day, for the next time I come up against Implicit Memory disguised as the deep dark black space in my body.
*For more articles, check out the Mind Body Thoughts Blog